Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas 2007

Christmas is always a lovely time for my family. If we are in Pennsylvania and Delaware there is plenty of running around and visiting and joy. If we stay in Michigan it is much more relaxed. No running around but still plenty of joy. In Michigan Christmas Eve is always a nice dinner. This year we had ham. It was quite beautiful and also delicious.

Before bedtime we open our Christmas Eve gift. It is always pajamas and everyone knows it.

Christmas morning is generally a wake up early day. There are some gifts and a good breakfast. Then the Christmas movies begin and we watch them all day while we eat some yummy hors d'oeuvres all day until it's time for bed.
So Maggie got her Ladybug and some Louet Northern Lights to spin. She is a happy girl and has almost filled a bobbin already with a single that plies into a DK weight yarn.
Ryan didn't stop moving all day. As you can see in the photo there are hockey supplies galore.
Chelsea liked (I think) her new sweater.
This is what Brittney and Chelsea looked like most of the day.
I got this.

And this. There was lots of spinning. I will probably take one with me to Disney World. (only 3 days to go!)
Ryan in his new net. It is a full size hockey net and the boy couldn't be happier. It took up most of the living room. Now it's in the garage.

Yes those are pink skates. They are Maggies and we are mean and haven't gotten him new ones so he wears the pink.

Check out how she gets the wheel going with her foot. Cute as a button she is.

And now she's evidently planning to make yarn and sell it in my shop.

O.K. I'm off in a couple of days to the Magic of the Mouse but there may be some remote blogging.

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Things are looking up! Well halfway at least. I wonder how long it takes for all of it to be in the upswing at the same time. Looks like I'll be tired and dumb at Disney World. But at least I'll be happy!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Originally the first Tuesday of the month was when some people came by and spun or knitted or whatever and we just had a nice time and the rest of the Tuesdays I just hoped to see a smiling face. Well, now every Tuesday is buckets of fun. Michelle comes almost every Tuesday Shannah comes too and so does the other Michelle (that's her in the middle of the photo). And of course Maggie's day at the shop is always Tuesday. Fantastic Fun. Michelle and Shannah keep me in line and the other Michelle... Just buckets of fun every week now.

This picure has a lot going on. Maggie has just learned to use a niddy noddy and it skeining off some yarn she just plyed on the ladybug wheel. Michelle is plying something she just finished spinning and everything is everywhere in the shop - like always.
I do straighten up in there. I do. So does Shannah. It just gets messy really fast. Don't know what to do about it. But look at little Maggie go with that niddy.
Here's the never ending sweater finally knitted into submission. I'll give you all the gory details. The yarn is Katia Surf 100% acrylic. I bought this yarn more than 6 years ago at a little yarn store in Phoenixville PA. I loved the feel of it and loved the shine of it so every ball they had came home with me - 12 I think.
I had this yarn in my stash for at least a year and then decided to make a sweater for Chelsea out of it. I began the search for an appropriate pattern which took a couple of months and then set out to knit the thing.
The pattern is from Vintage Knits by Sarah Dallas. It is the Ribbed sweater done on 3.0 mm needles.
k2p2k2p2k2p2k2p2 until you want to scream!!!!
Last October I decided I would finish it for Chelsea and give it to her for Christmas. The back was already done and the front was about at the halfway point. I knitted like crazy and got the front finished and the sleeves about halfway. Then it was Christmas...
I put it in a box and wrapped it and promised to finish it.
Then 3 weeks ago I remembered the box and started knitting again. Hours and hours and hours.
I don't like knitting with this yarn. There's no give, flexibility. It is 6 ply yarn that splits like crazy.
Never Ending.
Until tonight.
I had Brittney model it - cause Chelsea hasn't seen it yet. Wouldn't be fair to count it at a Christmas present again, I guess....

Some skating for the grandparents...

Sunday, December 16, 2007

To My Grammy

Dear Grammy,
I made you these fingerless mitts for Christmas. I got the very easy pattern from They are called Voodoo Wrist Warmers. I knitted them from a Merino Wool and Silk blend yarn that I made on my spinning wheel. I love the color and I think they will be warm for you. I used US size 3 double pointed needles to knit them. I like this pattern because of the button hole thumb (my friend Shannah told me about it). I have also enclosed the remaining yarn in case you want to use it for something.

Now before you start saying all of the things I know you'll say, please let me answer your questions.

Yes, your fingers are hanging out the ends. I have a pair of these - also from Knitty - called Fetching and I wear them all of the time. I can dig in my purse and knit and dial the phone and everything with them on. I wear mine to almost every hockey game. I thought they might come in handy for you when you are at the flea market on Sundays. If someone wants to buy something you can give them change and never take your mitts off.

The magical thing is that if you keep your wrists warm your hands feel warmer. I think you will be happy with these. Please try them out.

And Merry Christmas.
Love Bethy

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

How I Felt...and also knit....and also spin

I've been a little light on the fiber stuff lately. Not that I haven't been doing it. Really. I'm finishing Chelsea's sweater (which always takes longer than I think, which is why after 4 years it's still not finished), I'm working on a sweater for me, I've got about 3 different fibers I'm spinning, and an idea for a sweater design from handspun which is a new territory for me. Not the spinning, the designing. I'm just never sure about posting about things in various stages of unfinished so I don't do it much.


Here's what Maggie spun in the shop tonight from Louet Northern Lights. I think it's Icy something colorway.
I took a little and plied it back on itself so you can see what it will look like when she plies it. Six years old. I hope Santa brings her a Ladybug because the girl is good.
Here's what I did tonight. I had a class with only one student called Last Minute Felted Gifts. I made a couple other things too but I actually came up with this little gem in my own tiny brain. Cute as a button I think.

I started with a Styrofoam cone - because they are supposed to be quick things - and covered it with a layer of dark green roving. I then took little wisps of fiber - different shades of green - and folded them in half and needle felted them into place where the ends came together. I started at the bottom and worked to the top. I made the little balls and felted them in up under the folds and the star was just a flat felted piece that I cut out and poked in the feet to make it stand up.

I think it's kind of cute. Don't get carried away with my felting skills though. The whole time I was poking and prodding I was thinking that I'd rather be spinning so I don't think I have a bright future in the needle felting like some people I know. But it's good to branch out.

It's also good to go back to the lovely, quite, rhythmic beauty that is spinning.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Sneakers and Santa and Shooting and Spindles

It's been quite a week so I've got some picture highlights.

On Thursday afternoon we went to visit Santa and give him our Christmas list. Well, half of us did anyway because I think Santa has a lap weight limit. More on that in a minute.

On the way home from Santa and the mall we stopped at Marshall's because Maggie needed new sneakers - again.

She is a girl after my own heart.
Oooooohhh, shiny.
Here's a closeup of the toe.

And the high top. We were in Nordstrom at the mall and saw other shoes from this maker for almost 3 times what we paid. I was quite surprised to find them and once Maggie saw them it was all over.So here they are with Santa. Maggie asked for a Hannah Montana CD and a spinning wheel! She narrowed it down to two items because she didn't want Santa to think she was greedy. I asked her, "What if Santa doesn't bring you a spinning wheel?" Maggie replied, "That's o.k., Mom, I'll just get one from your shop." She wants a Ladybug to be specific. We shall see.

Ryan asked for Hockey Gloves, a Hannah Montana CD, and an ice mat. I have a question. What is an ice mat? Ryan said it's a mat you put down that looks like hockey ice so he can play in the kitchen - which he already does without the ice mat. I've never seen anything like it. I've never heard of it. My son is an inventor. Of course I think it's too close to Christmas for the prototype.

Friday night I went shopping to TJ Maxx and Target and finished off the last of the shopping. It's a smaller Christmas this year for many reasons. A big one is that we have enough. Also, in only 22 more days, we are going to Disney World. Two good reasons to cut back.
Saturday night we went to the Michigan Hockey game. it was Teddy bear Toss night. They collected more than 750 teddy bears to benefit Mott Children's hospital. We look forward to this night every year and the kids got to go along this year.

And to top off an already great week Ryan was chosen to play Score-O. He went down on the ice and got to shoot at the goal for a chance to win prizes.
He was a little unsure at first but as soon as that stick was in his hand he was ready.

And he made his goal with no problem. Another example of the benefits of kitchen hockey.

Now the next problem. When I got to the shop on Saturday there was a box of new spindles from Greensleeves. I believe I got 26 new spindles and I want to keep at least half for myself. I have no pictures because I don't want to tease you all if I decide to keep them. I already own at least 13 spindles. I love them. I love the wood grains. I love spinning with them. But...if I want to continue paying the rent and having a shop I will have to give them up. I will narrow it down to one to keep and sell the rest. Seriously, I've already spun on many of them. LOVE!

O.K. off to knit. There's a little thing I promised to finish for Chelsea last Christmas and now a year has passed... Pictures when it's done.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


So the home wireless is back and all is right with the world. I'm in my warm comfy bed with something trashy on TV and writing and new blog post. It's almost perfect. The thing that's not perfect is that the wrong by is sleeping next to me.

Stop thinking those things you people!

Ryan is the sleeping boy and Lou is downstairs watching Hockey as usual. Did you ever notice that it's hockey season for like 11 months out of the year?

So the Anniversary/Grand re-opening/excuse-to-have-a-party-for-myself went very well. Lots of my favorite people, traffic jams, hugs and plenty of eating as well as a couple of new people who will soon join the ranks of the favorite people. As usual the blogging thing didn't enter my mind until too late. All of the people were gone and then I thought I should get the camera out.
So here's a picture of the door prizes. The winner's have been contacted and all are very happy I think.
Here's Shannah at the end of the day still working hard.
This is an idea of how most of the shelves looked after everyone left.
And this is how much food was left from the files and stacks which were on the table at the start.
All in all it was fantabulous. We're thinking about another party in late January. A Pajama party I think. A sleepover. A Spin-In. A fibery night of fun. You bring the sleeping bag I'll bring the snacks. I'm not sure how it will work yet but let me know if you are interested in this.

So that night we went to the Michigan Hockey game and my darling was chosen to play the Northwest Airlines Shoot Around the World. There he is on the ice waiting for his turn to play.
Here he is facing his goals. The object is to shoot the pucks into the five nets to win frequent flyer points. He made three out of the five goals for a win of 6500 points. He's the current lead scorer for the season! Kitchen hockey has paid off.
I just had to include this picture. I think Shannah took it. That's my little Maggie girl spinning away on the LadyBug that she's dreaming of for a Christmas present. She's becoming a pretty good little spinner.
And the mohair. The colors are great.

Don't forget to tell me what you think of the sleepover night!